Christopher Norris argues for and constructs a new approach to philosophy of mind that combines naturalistic and rationalist perspectives usually thought to be at odds. "Re-Thinking the Cogito" seeks to combine a strongly naturalistic with a distinctively rationalist perspective on some nowadays much-discussed issues in philosophy of mind. Against the common view that they involve downright incompatible conceptions of mind, knowledge and ethics it seeks to unite a naturalism that draws on recent advances in neurophysiology and cognitive science with an outlook that gives full weight to those normative values at the heart of rationalist thought. True to the book's constructive spirit, Norris offers various detailed proposals for bringing the two approaches into a mutually enhancing - though also mutually provocative - relationship. He finds that claim strikingly prefigured in Spinoza's working-out of a non-reductive yet metaphysically uncompromising mind/body monism. Moreover he suggests how a thoroughly naturalised approach might yet become a locus of productive engagement with the work of an ultra-rationalist thinker such as Alain Badiou.
Thus Norris puts the case that physically embodied human thought has cognitive, intellectual and creative powers that cannot and need not be accounted for in terms of conscious (let alone self-conscious) reflection. "Continuum Studies in Philosophy" presents cutting-edge scholarship in all the major areas of research and study. The wholly original arguments, perspectives and research findings in titles in this series make it an important and stimulating resource for students and academics from a range of disciplines across the humanities and social sciences.
Christopher Norris is the author of numerous books on aspects of philosophy, critical theory, and modern intellectual history. He is Distinguished Research Professor in Philosophy at the University of Cardiff and has taught at many universities in India, Australia, Spain, Germany, Canada, China, the US, and elsewhere.
Foreword Introduction; 1. Living with Naturalism, Full-Strength: Why Philosophers Find it Hard; 2. Frankfurt on Second-Order Desires and the Concept of a Person; 3 Re-Thinking the Cogito: Thought, Knowledge and the Limits of Consciousness; 4. Catching Up with Spinoza: Naturalism, Rationalism and Cognitive Science; 5. Alain Badiou: Rationalism, Ethics, and the Venture of Thought; Bibliography; Index.